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  1. FlakeandFins
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    FlakeandFins Contributing Member

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    Debate Etiquette

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by FlakeandFins, Jul 28, 2008.

    I feel bad for getting worked up on sfr's topic. Sometimes people just flamebait enough that I lose it.

    What's flamebait you ask?

    For those that don't know, let me preface that answer with the following:

    There are a multitude of hot-button issues that can be discussed. Religion, abortion, capital punishment, same-sex marriage, illegal immigration, who's better the Red Sox or the Yankees (it's the Red Sox) (how'd that get in there?), etc. There's more, of course. Issues like these arouse the deepest passion in people. It goes beyond simple politics. These are issues that are personal to each individual, for reasons others may not understand.

    When someone comes into the debate and contributes by saying: You're pro-life/pro-choice? You neo-nazi conservative/monster baby killer, or: you believe in God/don't believe in God? You pious SOB/godless heathen; these don't add to the debate at all. They are comments that just ignite an anger in individuals. Whether they are knowingly said to provoke others is up to debate. In either case, that is flamebait.

    Flamebaiting is not how you stimulate the debate positively. It is trite and annoying. If you're point can't be made without being insulting, then don't. Why would you want to anyway? The point of debate is to argue your point while at the same time stimulating the other person's/people's mind, not insult and spark their inner feelings.

    Conversely, biting the flamebait is also bad (as I did and now regret). Rise above it.

    So that's my rant on debate etiquette. Anyone else have something that comes up in debates all the time that they can't stand/is in poor taste?
     
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  2. Rawiya
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    Rawiya Member

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    I'm used to people calling that trolling, personally. But its one of my pet peeves too. I belonged to a couple of debate forums in the past and there's always one troll who comes along and starts a topic that eventually gets so out of hand because of contradictory comments which are posted simply because they are contradictory. Inevitable what ends up happening is that a mod hast to come along and close the thread.

    For me, the biggest problem is grammatical and spelling errors. One or two is understandable - everybody makes mistakes. But if you don't put effort into going over what you wrote and making sure that your point is clear, and the post is comprehensible, why should I read it?
     
  3. gigantes
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    gigantes Banned

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    [​IMG]
    -Randall Munroe
     
  4. CDRW
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    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'll see your xkcd and raise you one.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Silver Random
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    Silver Random Senior Member

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    Ah flamebaiting :p On the 1 forum i've really been active on (which was a forum about an online game i used to play), "flamebaiting" became the single most overused word there, so that its meaning was finally lost, with new people saying "omg flamebaiting" for anything, including actual "flaming" :confused:

    Just thought i'd mention that :eek:

    One thing i don't like in forum debates is when people intrude and try to stop the debate. I know that occasionally things can become more "arguing" than "debating" (which personally i think is actually ok as long as it doesnt go too far), but if it really has to be stopped it will be done by threads being locked rather than people intruding and saying "If you dont agree with something then pretend you didnt read it" . Also dealing with people that are Mods / Owner of forums with overly strict rules, who believe it is ok to become involved in argument or even to "flamebait", and then ban people for responding to them or for breaking the forum rule "you cannot disagree with a moderator" (and im not making that up :rolleyes: )

    Also, i dont like when wayy too many people are arguing with me and quoting your posts, or re-using arguments that have i have already answered a little earlier in the debate, as i cant always reply to all of them. But thats more just something thats happened to me in the past rather than debate etiquette lol :p
     
  6. Scribe Rewan
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    Scribe Rewan Contributing Member

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    ^ love it (the cartoons). Damn I've got to say something else so this post qualifies....

    On a personal note I try to be uber polite when I say anything in a debate, so I don't offend anyone.

    If I was ever in a sword fight, I'd have wrapped my sword in cotton wool first!

    One thing that gets me going is when someone quotes one sentence out of a paragraph you wrote and argues it, or uses it to support their case which I'm argueing against, simply because they took my words out of context.
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Flamebaiting is when someone pops into a site for the sole purpose of depositing inflammatory posts. They then sit back and brag to their friends based on how many angry posts they managed to provoke. And yes, that is also called trolling, from the fishing term of dragging a baited line behind a boat through a feeding area.

    This site tries to minimize arguments. There is plenty that can be discussed without tempers flaring up, and there are also plenty of other sites you can visit if you're in the mood for a belly full of fire.

    Instead, we insist on civility and respect for other members. Admittedly, that puts us slightly out of step with the majority of internet forums. It also makes for more cooperative relationships among members.

    The owner set the rules, and the philosophy behind them. I, among many others, appreciate that he has laid down this framework, and I do my part to maintain it. Of course, not everyone will appreciate those efforts.

    I learned a long time ago that you can't please everyone.
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i'll second that, cog! [though i must admit i'm not a voting member of the board]
     
  9. sfr
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    sfr Contributing Member

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    Do you think I should not have posted a question on a sensitive topic?
     
  10. Heather Louise
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    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

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    Not at all mate, you can post what ever question you want (within reason obviously), it is not your fault how people choose to react. Sometimes we have long discussions and debates where many people can contribute their ideas and suggestion, and everyone's opinion is respected. Other times we have threads started which within hours it has turned into a flame war. It just depends I guess.

    the thread is closed now (I assume this is in reference to the one about God), and it should hopefully be the end of the arguement now. :)

    Heather
     
  11. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Religion threads appear every so often, and thus far they've all ended up as flaming. But I'm willing to allow one every now and then, just because we usually manage some civil debate before it explodes.
     

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